Andhra Pradesh

Govt. plans to make free power to farm sector a permanent scheme

The government is spending ₹8353.58 cr. on implementation of free power scheme, says official.  

The State government is initiating measures to make the nine-hour supply of power to the farm sector free of cost a permanent scheme.

It has instructed the power utilities to focus on building a permanent and robust system for supply of free power to the agricultural connections across the State on a permanent basis, making it clear that it is ready to bear the cost required to strengthen the free power scheme.

Solar power plant

The State has embarked on installation of a 10,000 MW solar power plant for supply of free power to the farm sector for the next 30 years.

The power utilities will also commission new power transformers at various 400 KV sub-stations and construct 200 KV switching stations as part of the move to strengthen the supply network. “Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy wants the capacity of the feeders to be upgraded. Funds to the tune of ₹1,700 crore have been sanctioned for the purpose. The upgradation works have been completed and free power is being supplied to 99 % of the feeders and the rest will be covered by the end of rabi season,” said a senior AP-Transco official.

Minister for Energy B. Srinivasa Reddy said the move would make agriculture a profitable venture and empower the farmers. “The State will progress if farmers are happy,” he said.

Plans are also afoot to implement the free power scheme through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) under which the entire amount will be deposited in the accounts of farmers who will pay it to the Discoms.

DBT scheme

“The DBT scheme will enable farmers to question the Discoms on the quality of the power supplied to them, thereby improving the accountability factor. The government is spending ₹8353.58 crore on the implementation of free power scheme,” said Energy Secretary N. Srikant.

Mr. Srikanth reviewed the power supply scheme with AP-Transco Joint Managing Directors K. Sreedhar Reddy and K. Venkateswara Rao, Director (Finance) K. Muthu Pandian, Director (Grid and Transmission) K. Praveen Kumar, Chairpersons and Managing Directors of Discoms S. Naga Lakshmi, H. Harinatha Rao and J.P. Janardhan Reddy and others.

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2021 2:21:05 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/govt-plans-to-make-free-power-to-farm-sector-a-permanent-scheme/article33562600.ece

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